The 2021 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. student essay writing contest, sponsored by the Diversity Taskforce of Independence and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Planning Committee, is now accepting entries from students in grades 6th through 8th. This year's topic is: The Urgency of Creating the Beloved Community." Entires must be received at the Independence Middle School no later than Jan. 11, 2021.

Participating students are asked to describe, in 1,000 words or less The Urgency of Creating the Beloved Community as Dr. King dreamed of a "beloved community," a society based on justice and equality where all persons are accepted and included. Do you see examples of this in your community? Why should there be an urgency for all communities to be like Dr. King dreamed of? Do you do anything in your daily life to promote group cooperation and work- ing together to solve social problems? Do you have any ideas to help your school or our city?

DTF and the MLK planning committee want to hear your thoughts and ideas. $50 in prize money is awarded to the winning entry at each eligibility level. Contact your school for more information.